Jesse James was fined $271,250 by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) for building 50 motorcycles between 1998 and 2005 violating state emissions standards. While some may feel this just shows no one is above the law, looking a little closer makes it appear it was more about the money.
Jesse James is not turning out thousands of motorcycles and when told his bikes were non compliant he offered to bring them all in and fit them with the necessary parts to correct the problems. CARB instead said he needed to pay $22,000 per bike, later settled to be around $5,000 each to make him right with the state. This is the same Jesse James who built Cisco Burger, the solar powered, biodegradeable, all organic hamburger stand. The same Jesse James who has built a hydrogen powered race car to set a new speed record at Bonneville with a car that emits mostly water vapor. I guess when you're a bureaucrat on a mission, none of that matters.
This kind of enforcement gives a guy an uncomfortable feeling when you consider the new EPA rules about motorcycle engine compliance for custom and kit built motorcycles. CARB and the EPA are not the same agency, CARB seems to be the overachiever here, but once enforcement starts, low volume motorcycle builders could be facing big headaches.
Link: Press Telegram